The International Association of Agricultural Museums is a forum for organisations dedicated to promoting interest in the impact of agriculture on human society through the ages. For more information about our origins and our work, see About Us.
If you’re interested in the history of agriculture, or are involved in a museum or organization dealing in some way with the subject, why not join us.
A number of organizations are already members: have a look.
AIMA is pleased to share the rich content of CIMA 2023, the first Congress held in India.
Attendees saw the rich and varied landscape of northeast India as they traveled by train and bus between two host institutions - 13-15 October 2023 at Shoolini University of Biotechnology and Management Sciences (near Solan, Himanchal Pradesh) and 16-18 October 2023 at Punjab Agricultural University (Ludhiana, Punjab).
View of Shoolini University from the CIMA 2023 meeting location. Plated meal featuring millet prepared by renowned chef, Nishant Choubey (14 October 2023).
AIMA anticipated World Food Day (16 October) during the International Year of Millets (2023) with a demonstration by chef, Nishant Choubey. It is easy to see why Eat With India describes him as "sustainable chef."
A bus transferred CIMA 2023 attendees from the Himalaya foothills to the plains of Punjab and the Punjab Agricultural University. There, administrators and faculty welcomed attendees to the many university museums including the Museum of the Green Revolution and the Crop Improvement Museum, among others (stay tuned for reports on each). PAU administrators dedicated a new museum honoring Dr. Gurdev Singh Khush, rice-breeder and 1996 World Food Prize laureate during CIMA 2023.
Tours of two Punjab Agricultural University museums, Museum of the Green Revolution (left) and the Museum of Crop Improvement (right).
A highlight included an evening at the Museum of Social History and Rural Life of Punjab and a talk by the architect of the museum, S. S. Sekhon.
Museum of Social History and Rural Life of Punjab (left) and the architect of the museum, S. S. Sekhon, speaking to CIMA 2023 delegates.
Delegates to CIMA 2023 at the Museum of Social History and Rural Life of Punjab.
The Punjab leg of the conference concluded with a tour of the Krishi Vigyan Kendra at Jalandhar. This agricultural research station focuses on locally-appropriate technology and delivers information to farm families through short term and vocational training.
Farm fields next to the Krishi Vigyan Kendra at Jalandhar with a farmer discussing a training course in artificial insemination, and the concluding tea hosted by PAU administrators and faculty at the Krishi Vigyan Kendra at Jalandhar (next to a prototype bus stop in background that, when installed, delivers agricultural information while it shelters travelers).
Stay tuned for summaries of site visits, links to recorded presentations, and the conference proceedings.
Agriculture? Glass? What’s the connection?
Fig. 1. Stained Glass Panel, Labours of the Months (October - breaking up clods and scattering wheat), 1450-1475, England. From Cassiobury Park, Hertfordshire. Source: Commons Wikimedia.
Have you ever thought about how farmers and market gardeners care for “baby” plants, for example, by covering them with a glass cloche to prevent frost damage or simply creating a special climate by sheltering them in a glass greenhouse?
Fig. 2. Growing strawberries in a greenhouse in Japan, 2005. Source: Commons Wikimedia.
When a farmer works late into the evening, the tractor lights go on and they are glass-fronted, but so is the windshield (windscreen) and look at all the glass covering the gauges in that tractor cabin.
Did your grandmother “put up” vegetables and fruit in glass containers (often called “canning”)?
Fig. 3. Girl holding canning jars. Franklin D. Roosevelt Library, Hyde Park, New York, USA. Commons Wikimedia.
And when she made jams and jellies, she put them in sealed glass jars that revolutionized the shelf-life of foods. Today, farmers might even use tumbled glass in mulch, but.... that is for another message, so stayed tuned for more.
Comparing 2000 years of cultivation: seeds, technology, and processing
The "A Year On The Field" Project seeks to exchange knowledge about cultivation of one crop through the centuries and in many parts of the world, powered by diverse museum sites, living history farms and also commercial farms (conventional or organic).
The international project was initiated in autumn 2021 and during the pilot year (2021-2022) the chosen crop is common wheat. Sites and farms participating in the project are developing a unique database on various cultivation traditions, regional seed varieties and traction methods: animal or tractor powered. Moreover, participating sites also network on a deep level despite country lines and distance.
The general aim of the project is to raise public interest in agriculture: its historical implications and for modern sustainable food production.
AIMA is endorsing "A Year On The Field" and is officially hosting the project’s homepage. Additonally, many members of AIMA are also participating in the project and contribute valuable scientific and practical input.
Learn more about the project watching Claus Kropp AIMA lecture on the subject: AIMA Lecture - Claus Kropp - A Year On the Field - YouTube
Follow us through our year on the field: www.yearonthefield.net
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2021 AIMA Conference Proceedings and Links to Recorded Keynotes and Sessions Available Here (June 20, 2023)
First content from AIMA 2021 Congress goes live
Dear AIMA members, we are delighted to share with you the keynote presentations from this year’s International Association of Agricultural Museums Congress, AIMA 2021. These three presentations cover different aspects of the diverse work of our agricultural museums community. We will be sharing further content from the Congress in due course. AIMA members and AIMA 2021 participants will soon be sent links to enable them to access all pre-recorded content shared during AIMA 2021. This release will be followed by full recordings, inclusive of discussions, which are set to be uploaded in the next few weeks. Following on from these advance releases, the full AIMA 2021 playlist will be made accessible to the wider public at a later date. We look forward to producing and distributing written proceedings in a digital format by May 2022.
Mise en ligne du premier contenu du congrès de l'AIMA 2021
Chers membres de l'AIMA, nous sommes ravis de partager avec vous les présentations principales du congrès de l'Association internationale des musées d'agriculture de cette année, AIMA 2021. Ces trois présentations couvrent différents aspects du travail diversifié de notre communauté de musées agricoles. Nous partagerons d'autres présentations et contenu du congrès dans les prochaines semaines. Les membres de l'AIMA et les participants à l'AIMA 2021 recevront bientôt des liens leur permettant d'accéder à tout le contenu préenregistré partagé pendant l'AIMA 2021. Cette diffusion sera suivie par des enregistrements complets, incluant les discussions, qui seront mis en ligne dans les prochaines semaines. Après ces diffusions anticipées, la liste de lecture complète d'AIMA 2021 sera mise à la disposition du grand public à une date ultérieure. Nous espérons pouvoir produire et distribuer les actes écrits sous forme numérique d'ici mai 2022.
This short video was produced for participants in the International Association of Agricultural Museums Congress, AIMA 2021. It shows AIMA YouTube channel users to how to take advantage of the auto-translate functions within YouTube to access subtitled content in alternative languages.
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Cette courte vidéo a été produite pour les participants au congrès de l'Association internationale des musées d'agriculture, AIMA 2021. Elle montre aux utilisateurs du canal YouTube de l'AIMA comment profiter des fonctions de traduction automatique de YouTube pour accéder au contenu sous-titré dans d'autres langues.
This keynote presentation from the International Association of Agricultural Museums Congress (AIMA 2021) is presented by Adam Sutherland, Director of Grizedale Arts. He discusses the reinvention and evolution of Lawson Park, a long derelict Cumbrian hill farm that is now the hub of a complex program of collaborations between farming communities from Yamaguchi to Southside Chicago.
This keynote presentation from the International Association of Agricultural Museums Congress (AIMA 2021) is presented by Nerupama Modwel, Director of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Division of the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage. The presentation is set against the backdrop of contemporary Indian agriculture and the rapid changes and complexities of that sector. It introduces us to the work of the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage, with a particular focus on their conceptualization of agricultural practices and traditions as forms of intangible heritage in need of safeguarding and recording.
This keynote presentation from the International Association of Agricultural Museums Congress (AIMA 2021) is presented by Adam Koszary, former Digital Lead, The MERL, University of Reading, and former Social Media and Content Editor, Royal Academy of Arts. In April 2018 The MERL achieved viral internet fame when it tweeted a photograph of an Exmoor Horn Aged Ram, archived as part of holdings related to the journal Farmer and Stockbreeder. This presentation explores how the event affected the museum and the wider sector, the potential for agricultural museums for using social media in advancing their missions, and what is holding them back.